Enrico Fermi was one of the greatest physicists of all time. Take a look at the history of any branch of physics, and he was there, helping things along. Take a look at his most famous portrait and he made a boneheaded mistake. Maybe on purpose.
In this week's "Ask a Physicist," we deal with a crazy and exciting question. Is the Fine Structure Constant really a constant? Maybe. Okay, probably.
The strength of the electromagnetic interaction, one of physics's most fundamental constants, is actually very slowly changing, and has different values in different parts of the universe. This amazing find could help us find a grand unified theory of physics.